Selectmen approved a compromise Wednesday to increase parking at Phillips Beach by opening 20 spaces to parking on the beach side of Shepard Avenue.
The spaces will be open to those with recreation stickers from May 1 to Oct. 1.
Selectmen Chairman Jill Sullivan said it is clear that people in Swampscott want more parking at the town beach. The trick is providing it in a fair and safe way.
Selectmen plan to revisit the parking matter next year, if necessary.
The Traffic Study Committee, after carrying out the Phillips Beach parking study, its third Phillips study in 18 months, had recommended that selectmen open Shepard Avenue to parking on both sides creating 38 spaces, said committee Chairman Dave Castellarin.
But Shepard Avenue resident Sheryl Levenson and others in the audience Wednesday objected, saying the recommendation placed too great a burden on people who live on Shepard.
Allowing vehicles to park on both sides would effectively turn the street into a parking lot, limiting parking for visitors to Shepard homes and making it unsafe for walkers and motorists alike.
Selectman Matt Strauss said the traffic panel, after measuring streets for those that could accommodate parking, based its recommendation on Shepard's dimensions.
The consensus of selectmen was that the two-sided parking idea was unfair to the Shepard residents.
Even a vocal proponent of increasing parking at Phillips, Mark "Whisky" Wolinski, suggested that only one side of Shepard be open to parking, and that the town open parking elsewhere in the vicinity.